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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

Lake Life, Little Norway style

With the car loaded to the brim and adventurous hearts, we hit the open road!

We made the 6 1/2 hour drive with only three stops (two restroom breaks and a grocery stop). We checked into Little Norway resort at Mantrap Lake. It is quite possible that this is Minnesota’s version of heaven!

Charlie’s on vacay time!

“Charlie! Be Pizza Lady and Tramp with me!”

We got ourselves settled and groceries unpacked, and checked it out. The lake was so clear you could see the bottom, and tiny little fish ready to be caught! We managed to get a fire made and a couple s’mores eaten before the rain drove us in for the evening.

Sunday we slept in, enjoyed a muffin-filled, sunny, lakeside morning!

The Adventure Crew is united at Little Norway!

The pals arrived, and we hit the beach as soon as they could get their suits on! We swam and paddled and giggled and cannonballed. Perfection! We returned to the cabin to for dinner, and had a blast fishing off the dock. They’d catch fish almost as quickly as they’d drop it! We wrapped up our evening with cards and fun! Welcome to Vacation!

Monday was a bit cool, so we headed to Itasca State Park for some hiking and sight seeing

We followed the Mississippi north. WAY north, to it’s start!

And we found the largest white pine in Minnesota!

Oh, Charlie! There is a restroom right there!

Then we go karted! Charlie and I lapped everyone! It was awesome!

Lots of hole in 1’s, good times, and Charlie as a winner!

We walked through Mantrap, the cutest little town! And of course we found the candy shop and popcorn store!

Back to the dock to fish!

We cleaned up, had dinner, and played Unstable Unicorns and Cribbage!

Hello, Tuesday! Blue skies and sunshine as far as the eye can see!

That’s my Carty, clear out there in her happy place!

And Charlie paddling along!

Lunch, Unicorns, Cribbage, happiness

Oh, Charlie! Purple question: Who does legend say stole from the rich and gave to the poor? “Uhh … Donald Trump?”

The things we do for our kids! Grossest damn thing EVER!

Wednesday, we were back at it!

https://youtu.be/7dAzsBYCzkE

And we ended our day with Poker!

Friday morning in town, for sweets, sweatshirts, and sandwiches!

Cards, cards, and more cards! We love it!

Leaving always makes me feel pretty barfy, too, B!

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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

New Hair, Who Dis?

Before & After
The Post-Recital Chop Tradition continues <3

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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

Week 14, Baseball & Recital 2020!

Tuesday 6.16.2020

Wednesday 6.17.2020

We hand-picked 8 1/2 pounds of fresh strawberries! And we enjoyed strawberry slushies and donuts after our hard work!

And Carts made grandma’s strawberry pie <3

… and Charlie couldn’t get enough!

Thursday 6.18.2020

Charlie finally got to play baseball! He and the Waukee Cubs won, 5 – 3!

Also Thursday 6.18.2020 …

https://youtu.be/Gd8IRch7T5k
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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

Week 13

Tuesday 6.9.2020

Cara, our neighbor, organized the awesome’est neighborhood event! The Big Red Food Truck and Sweet Swirls came out for the ‘hood! It was a great evening with good food and fun friends!

Wednesday 6.10.2020

The neighborhood was silent. There wasn’t a soul around. So what great idea did I have? Yep, let’s put Charlie behind the wheel!

The dudes had a blast running and sliding and laughing together!

And these two hung out enjoying the sunshine!

Friday 6.12.2020

Delicious!

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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

Week 12

Monday 6.1.2020

Whatever. It was amazing!

Thursday 6.4.2020

We had some issues with personal hygiene, or the lack of, and consequences were put in place. 24 hours of no tech, no friends, no fun. And you better believe things changed!

Friday 6.5.2020

The second that his 24-hour sentence was over, he was out the door! Friends and fun commenced!

Happy Sweet 16 Quarantine Birthday, Emma & Kayla!

Carter’s love of music collided with the ukuele, and it’s made for the greatest part of Coronavirus! I love her concerts!

Sunday 6.7.2020

Webelo 2! What a great guy! I look forward to all the cool community things he has in store to give back to others!

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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

Week 11

Wrapping up our Sunday evening with s’mores and buddies!

Whatta view <3

Monday 6/1/2020

We planned some birthday shenanigans for our favorites! We headed to Linc and J’s for the afternoon, then Kelsey’s for the evening, celebrating 6 and 40!

Birthday Water Balloons with Lincoln, Jameson, and Aunt Katie!

Carter helped Aunt Katie and Lincoln decorate Jameson’s Mystery Machine birthday cake!

Such cuties! What a fun afternoon!

Man, look out! Spoons can get vicious!

Tuesday 6/2/2020 : Happy 6th birthday, J! And happy 40th birthday, Kelsey!

It isn’t Arizona. It isn’t fancy food. But it is a beautiful day with my favorite people! Happy 40th, Kelsey!

What better way to celebrate the birthday girl than on the boat?! Birthday boating!

Around the :24 second mark, Charlie dives off the hot dog, worried he was going to get thrown off!

Shark bait! “I’m gonna eat you before you eat me!”

We had the best boat lunch ever from Bobbers! I absolutely love, love, LOVE these smiles!

We are so out of practice in adventuring! Quarantine broke out stamina! The car ride home was some much needed rest and relaxation!

Wednesday 6/3/2020

It’s just not summer until we hit the “Homaha Zoo”! CoVid has made life incredibly weird, so we were prepared for a strange adventure, but an adventure none the less! Homaha, here we come!

Social distancing, Zoo Edition!

Some of our favorites were closed off, and the vibe was just strange …

… but we found our friends, and we enjoyed a beautiful day!

Popcorn + Goose = Disasterous!

Hello, India!

Our traditional zoo pic is different this year, just like everything else has been!

We missed opening of TreeRush Adventures last summer, but there was no way we were going to miss it this summer!

… even if we have to do it in masks and gloves!

We took on the yellow course (easiest), and both green courses (harder than yellow, but not a blue or black), so we thought we could handle the more challenging of the blue courses. Boy, were we wrong! We got about 2/3 of the way through the harder blue course, and we were all spent. Staff got to help us repeal down the platform to the ground! We were saved! I ran to the car for my camera to catch them in their final courses before we were done!

Wrapping it all up with the last zipline in!

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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

Hello, Summer!

It’s set to be anything but a normal summer, but here it is, our odometer photo. 32,512 miles. How far will Bianca take us, and what adventures will she lead?!

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Andy, Kelly, Carter & Charlie

Week 10

Monday 5/25/2020

What a way to spend Memorial Day …. in true 2020 style!

Tuesday 5/26/2020

We picked up Carter’s school things, ending her freshmen year of high school

And Carts helped me deliver goodbye pinwheels all over town to my kids <3

Wednesday 5/27/2020

Before and After Quarantine haircuts: MUCH NEEDED!

Thursday 5/28/2020

With masks and smiles, we were ready to enjoy the Blank Park Zoo again! Our first real outing since we went into lockdown!

It was anything but the normal zoo trip. It was quiet and well-spaced between visitors and areas were closed off, but it was great to see our animal pals!

https://youtu.be/3_zzZ7S_6Ik

Boys playing, spraying, and goofing in the backyard, and the girls yelling and giggling in the living room: my heart needed this chaos!

https://youtu.be/uz5mz43y_4I

Friday 5/29/2020

We were supposed to be at the AJR concert this evening at Water Works Park. We were supposed to MEET AJR this evening! But the damn Coronavirus is the gift that just keeps giving. So, AJR and Ryan and Kelly is as good as it’s gonna get for us right now!

The kids’ quarter 4 teacher gave them progress reports … and they had to own them 😉

WE MADE IT!!! Man, I never thought we’d see this day! We survived Quarantine Homeschooling at Mama’s School of Hard Knocks. Honestly, hanging out with these two gave me some comfort during such a crazy, uncertain time.

The Rock Creek staff drove through community neighborhoods, saying goodbye. It was the greatest parade!

Ending our year, and our “normal” together, as a 7A team. We said goodbye to Jess and Katie, and just being back with my team was so great!

And, just like that, it’s summer!

Saturday 5/30/2020

We wanted to do something great for the kids in our neighborhood! They took on this Quarantine with grace and compassion. They listened when we preached social distancing, and they took care of us and one another when anyone needed anything. So we started what we’re hoping will continue on as tradition the Greystone Summer Kickoff! We had about a dozen neighbor folks host an activity of some sort, and kids traveled around the neighborhood playing. It was great seeing people we hadn’t seen in awhile, and it was cool to meet new neighbors! Bring on Summer!

Summer Day 1, and it’s already kicking his can!